ARE older drivers being discriminated against?
Although young drivers are dying on Queensland roads at a higher rate than other age groups only motorists over 75 are made to carry a medical certificate proving they are fit to drive.
The Queensland Government has stuck by the medical certificate requirement despite some seniors finding it "discriminatory".
Queensland road safety minister Mark Bailey said drivers aged between 16 and 24 were involved in 34% of fatal crashes despite making up just 14% of all licensed drivers.
In Queensland, drivers over 75 years must carry a medical certificate proving they are fit to drive.
Council on the Aging Queensland chief executive Mark Tucker-Evans said some older drivers saw the medical test as a burden that unfairly targeted them.
"Some older people see it as discriminatory as younger people don't have to anything like it," he said.
Mr Tucker-Evans said older drivers were not a dangerous demographic and a licence gave some seniors a sense of freedom.
"What we're hearing, particularly from people in the country, is if you take away their driver's licence then they are socially isolated," he said.
"Many drivers are driving well into their 80s and 90s and doing it quite safely."
Mr Bailey said he understood although many older drivers were fighting fit, having a doctor check their ability to drive was important.
"This is a bit of a difficult one because some senior citizens are incredibly fit and healthy right into very late old age; and others not so much," he said.
"So it really is a case of a third party - in this case a doctor - having a look at how people are going and making an assessment. And I think that's appropriate."
RACQ spokeswoman Lauren Ritchie said safe driving was not about age.
"Driving should always be about ability. You're might be 18, you might be 80, regardless of how old you are you have to be physically and mentally up to driving," she said.
Ms Ritchie said talking to parents or grandparents about giving up driving was hard but very important.
Mr Bailey said the government was working with young drivers to better engage them in road safety.
He pointed to the government's "Settle Down Stallion" online campaign that a team of Queensland teenagers created. The ads targeted social media and had about 1.4 million views.
University of the Sunshine Coast road safety researcher Bridie Scott-Parker said teenagers notoriously did not respond to being spoken down to. But she said teaching young people good driving habits started from a young age.
"If a young person sees mum and dad driving dangerously then they are more likely to do it too. It's monkey see, monkey do," she said.
"If they hear from their parents that speed cameras are just revenue raising then they aren't going to respect the speed limits."
Dr Scott-Parker said driver education did not start when kids got a learner's permit and end when they had their open licence.
"Be involved. Just because you don't think they are listening doesn't mean they aren't paying attention."
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